Each year, we like to run a series of posts called "90-in-90." The idea is that we'll take a look at every player on the roster, from the very bottom to the top and break them down a few ways. This roster will certainly change, and some days we'll have more than one so it's not exactly 90 players in 90 days. At this point, it's a name we're keeping around for street cred.
Aaron Lynch is exactly the kind of a player I want my team picking on the third day of the NFL Draft. He's one of the most talented rookies coming into the league period, with skillsets comparable to the top pass-rushers in the nation. So how did the San Francisco 49ers manage to nab him at No. 150 overall, a fifth-round selection?
His work ethic has been consistently questioned throughout his college career. His former strength coach even took to Twitter to question his character after the 49ers draft him. The worrying trend is that this gradually got worse throughout his career. He's got pass-rushing moves to rival someone like Jadeveon Clowney, but you won't find Clowney taking any plays off. You could point to Lynch slowing down in real-time last season.
But Lynch is coming to what I believe is the best organization in the NFL, and the strongest locker room. There are guys here who are going to push him to compete, and if he sinks at this point, then it's entirely on him.
Expected 2014 impact:
Lynch might actually see some playing time if he can pick up the playbook. Sure, the 49ers will put him on the field to see what he can do with his raw talent during the preseason, but he'll have to make some significant strides there before the 49ers put him on the field in a regular season game. He could be inactive for a large part of the season, though, depending on what happens with Aldon Smith.
The sky is the limit. The 49ers obviously want Smith to be the guy going forward, and on the other side, Corey Lemonier might just be pegged to take over for Ahmad Brooks down the line. Lynch is competing to get on the field in some way, an if the 49ers can get his head on straight, he WILL find his way onto said field., just probably not too much in 2014. He could be a starter in the future -- it's not the like the 49ers can have too many talented pass-rusers.
Odds of making the roster:
I think the 49ers like Lynch's athleticism and raw talent too much to let him go at this point. If he turns out to be a headache off the field, then sure, but he's here for the time being. I don't know that he'll be active very much, but he's a lock for the roster in my mind.